The Orchestra

The Walter Thompson Orchestra (WTO) since its inception in 1984 has been a virtual clearing house for New York improvising performing artists. Over the years the Orchestra has included many wonderful performers. Some past members of the WTO include: Thomas Chapin, Dave Douglas, Frank London, Herb Robertson, David Tronzo, Steve Swell, Sarah Weaver, Steven Bernstein, Ruth Dryer, Libby Shapiro, Linda Blacken, Mark Feldman, George Cartwright, Theo Bleckmann, Tom Varner, Vincent Chancey, Ethan Iverson, Tomas Ulrich, Bob Hovey, Marcus Rojas, Don Davis, Janet Grice, Allan Chase, Ed Sareth, Burton Greene, Jane Rigler, Philip Johnston, Will Connell, Bodan Hilash, James Zollar, Julie Ferrara, John Rapson, Gus Solomons among many many others.

Today the WTO is a multidisciplinary group and depending on the venue and direction in which Thompson will compose, the group may include musicians, dancers, actors and visual artists. The Orchestra today is:

Rob Henke – trumpet
Kirk Knuffke – cornet
Chris Washburne – trombone/tuba
Michael Attias – woodwinds
Christof Knoche – woodwinds
Erica Mancini – accordian/vocals
Eleonore Weill – hurdy gurdy/flutes
Sam Day Harmet – mandolin
Rolf Sturm – guitar/synth
Gil Selinger – cello
Zach Swanson – double bass
Steve Rust – double bass/electric bass
Caitlin Cawley – percussion
Hollis Headrick – percussion
Andrea Pryor – percussion
Michael-David Gordon – actor
Nolan Kennedy – actor/dancer
Leese Walker – actor/dancer
Nicole Poole – actor/dancer
Jennifer Rahfeldt – dancer/visual artist
Angélique Cormier – visual artist
Jaume Vidal – visual artist
Walter Thompson – soundpainter

The Walter Thompson Orchestra collaboration with Soundpainter Angélique Cormier, France 2012 (photo Guillaume Le Baube)